Caterham Superlight R500

From Caterham press:

The Superlight R500 represents the ultimate expression of Colin Chapman’s fundamentals. Big power isn’t the only route to big kicks; the R500 is all about lightweight performance – be it on the road or track.

Stripped to the bare essentials, all unnecessary comforts are removed to save weight and reduce mass. As with the other Caterham 7 Superlight models, the result is a car with performance to take your breath away by delivering driving thrills in the purest form. However, the R500 takes these values and triple distills them into super refined Class A, 101 octane, artillery caliber, weapons grade driving thrills.

The original R500 was legendary, with the old Rover K-series powered machine rewriting performance records for 0-60mph and 0-100-0mph times. This new variant has been equipped to supersede its predecessor by embracing the very latest in lightweight engineering techniques and technology.

Whilst the Superlight R500 shares some common parts with the other Superlight model, it has many bespoke standard and optional items that define its intentions of being the ultimate performance model in our range. Weight savings are achieved through a philanthropic application of carbon-fibre goodies, bringing the total weight of the car in at just 506kgs. Extreme performance is attained through cramming the engine bay with as many horses as possible – 263 of them to be precise. Mathematicians amongst you will have already calculated that anyone committed enough to strap themselves into the Kevlar race seats will be deploying a mighty 520 bhp-per-tonne with their right foot, capable of firing the car from 0-60 mph in just 2.88 seconds.

Superlight incorporates the motorsport expertise of Caterham Engineering, gained through 20 years of its industry leading one-make race championships. The Caterham 7 is among the most raced car models in the world, with over 700 competitors across 11 countries. Everything Caterham has learnt about performance and safety is incorporated into the design of the Superlight. Indeed, the R500’s new optional sequential gearbox has been tested thoroughly through our motorsport programme, clocking up track time equivalent to over a full season’s worth of testing, practicing, qualifying and racing in just a few months. What’s more, in another first for Caterham, we utilised the experience of over 50 racing drivers from various Caterham race series’ to test the gearbox. In all of this testing, the gearbox did not experience a single failure and was unanimously well received. In fact, the drivers liked it so much that it has been adopted into both the Superlight and CSR race series as an option.

If you want a pure driver’s car that delivers blistering on-road performance, raw driving thrills and outrageous track-day ability in equal measure then the Superlight R500 is for you. Hold on tight.

Gallery: Caterham Superlight R500